Man and woman running in Devon

Has lockdown made you fitter? Here's what you said.

By Rob Savin>

Lockdown. It’s a word some of us will never want to say again once we’re allowed out for good. But for many, fitness has found a way through. And that’s helped the nation’s emotional well-being. However, it’s not a consistent picture and a huge minority feel out of shape after the repeated requests to stay at home.

Last week we asked if you felt fitter after lockdown. Over a thousand people responded. Here’s what you said.

Most of you feel fitter

52% of you feel fitter than you did this time last year, with 30% saying you actually feel much fitter than last year. Only 9% of you said that you felt about the same.

But a really big minority feels less fit

40% told us that you feel less fit than last year, with 24% saying that you feel like you’ve lost a lot of fitness since last year. So while it’s wonderful that so many people have managed to use the time to exercise and gain fitness, nearly as many people have had the opposite experience. We’ll look at the main reasons why later.

Exercise helps our emotional wellbeing

Outdoors is good for the mind, good for the body and good for the soul. In fact, three out of every four people told us that a main reason for exercising during lockdown was for your emotional wellbeing. Next on the list was to get fit and after that, people’s biggest motivation was to lose weight. Perhaps unsurprisingly given the lack of events at the moment, last on the list was exercising to reach a target.

You’d do more if only there was more time!

The most common reason for not doing more exercise during lockdown was lack of time. 30% said that this was the main barrier. In fact, many of you said that you’ve never worked such long hours since being in lockdowns.

The next most common reason for not doing more was that 26% of you just feel constantly exhausted. We hear you! Just trying to follow the news is tiring enough!

Very specific impacts of the lockdowns affected people too. One in five said that childcare and homeschooling meant that you couldn’t get out as much as you wanted and another one in five said that you’re not getting as much exercise as this is something you normally do with other people.

But while there are so many good reasons for many not to do more exercise, a quarter of people said there are no barriers to you at all! Lucky you!

You’re walking more than anything else

70% of us have been walking during lockdown, which is by far the most common activity. It’s maybe not too surprising really - after all, you just need to put on your shoes, maybe a coat and head out the door.

The next most common activity was running (46%), followed by cycling (45%). One lucky respondent has managed to get out cross-country skiing!

You’ve discovered working out at home

Many of you have been trying new ways to exercise during the lockdowns and it’s not surprising to see that these activities are generally home-based. 31% of you have tried home gym workouts (Joe Wicks anyone?) and 25% have tried yoga or pilates for the first time, maybe spurred on by the need to stretch your back out after hours on video calls! Remember the key difference here - we said working out at home, not working at home!

You’re chomping at the bit to get out!

After nearly a year of lockdowns it’s hardly surprising to hear that 98% of you are chomping at the bit to get out. You are Alpkit customers after all!

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